Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Things To Do

June 12, 2014

REVIEW: ‘American Icon’ shows an astounding array of talent

CROSSVILLE — On-stage at the Cumberland County Playhouse recently, an astounding array of talent was on display. Education Director Weslie Webster had brought together all of the children, youth and even a few adults who are a part of the dance programs offered at the Playhouse. I will not attempt to list the names. Many were in several parts of the program. All were delightful to watch.

It was Memorial Day weekend. Two levels of Musical Theater classes moved to the tune of "Yankee Doodle Dandy." Their movements skillful choreographed by Leila Nelson.

What were the icons of your childhood? We saw creative movement to “Sesame Street,” tap to “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah,” beginning interpretive acting to “Dr. Seuss,” “Superheroes” with jazz dancing, and who better than “Winnie the Pooh” for ballet.

I began to grasp the importance icons have in shaping who we are as we moved into “Icons of Innovation.” Modern dance celebrated Neil Armstrong in space, then came tap focusing on Thomas Edison. Jazz reminded us of Andy Warhol. Alli Crain led the wee ones in pre-ballet as Henry Ford was the icon of an era. Michael Ruff and Daniel Black had staged “Shine Your Way” with those in musical theater classes.

Icons of the cinema. Who would yours be? Ginger Rogers, Audrey Hepburn, Ed Sullivan, Shirley Temple and Marilyn Monroe were celebrated by classes in musical theater, ballet, acting, tap and modern dance. The emerging talents of choreographers Leila Nelson and Emily Swafford were obvious.

Of course, there were iconic athletes brought to us by beginning and advanced tumbling classes and the more advance modern dance and hip-hop groups. Stevie Beaty choreographed these.

Literary icons Harper Lee, Mark Twain and F. Scott Fitzgerald as well as the speeches of Abraham Lincoln, FDR, JFK and Martin Luther King Jr. provided the background

photos for advanced ballet, acting, modern and point II ballet. 

Who would be your icons of music? Michael Jackson, Judy Garland, Elvis. James Brown and Frank Sinatra appeared as photo backgrounds for classes in hip-hop, advanced classes in tap, musical theater and ballet.

As the public service icons of Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks and John F. Kennedy appeared, I mused on our icons of that group today. Leila Nelson and Caitlin Schaub had brought unique dance sequences by the most advanced classes in tap, jazz and ballet to the stage.

The introductions by Tana McDonald, Kelley Camera, Crystal Bagci and Katey Dailey highlighted the importance of the icons before each segment.

Jim Crabtree, as producing director, and all of his Playhouse staff gift the children, youth and adults of this area with remarkable opportunity. Not only does one learn to move one's feet and one's body, but those who participate are challenged to use their minds.

The words that echoed in my thoughts at the end of the evening came from JFK: “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” As we each ponder those words for ourselves, we give thanks for the education program that does so much for our community and brings challenge to participants and audience alike.      

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Things To Do
  • City Lites.jpg 'Friday Night Air' features City Lites

    The “Friday Night Air” summer concert series continues Friday at the Spirit Broadband amphitheater in downtown Crossville with the City Lites Band. They are a very popular four-piece band from Crossville that has performed throughout Tennessee and the Southeast for more than three decades. Their lineup features Marty Gibson on guitar and vocals, Flavy Miller on bass and vocals, Glenn Holverson on saxophones and Wade England on drums. The song list includes a wide variety of musical styles from swing, country, '50’s and '60’s, rock and more. Something for everyone to enjoy! The performance is free to the public and begins at 6 p.m. and is sponsored by the Historic Palace Theatre and the city of Crossville.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gypsy, Front Page News open this weekend

    They're gearing up for a very exciting week both at the Cumberland County Playhouse and at the Rhea County Courthouse in Dayton!

    July 17, 2014

  • LexVinDance260_2.jpg Vintage Dance Society opens PAART season

    The Performing Arts Alliance of Rural Tennessee (PAART) is pleased to announce the first event in it’s 2014-15 season: the Lexington Vintage Dance Society will perform "Downton Abbey Era: The Titanic to the Jazz Age" in period costumes. This performance will take place Oct. 3 at 7 p.m. at the Palace Theatre in Crossville.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • gypsy hombres.jpg Gypsy Hombres take stage Sunday

    For years, there has been a persistent legend in Nashville about a crazy gypsy ‘Fiddler on the Roof” who dances as he plays the violin on the roof of his Victorian house. Cumberland County Playhouse will prove the legend is 100 percent true as The Gypsy Hombres take the stage Sunday.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • 'Gypsy' opens July 18 at CCP

    Beginning July 18, everything’s coming up roses as the Playhouse brings one of the greatest American musicals of all time to life… “Gypsy”! From the unforgettable first notes of its legendary overture to the final white hot spotlight, “Gypsy” is considered by many to be “the best musical ever,” as it tells the story of the archetypal stage mother, Rose, and her daughters, June and Louise.

    July 10, 2014

  • wildman.jpg ‘Wild Man’ takes Palace stage Aug. 23

    Look out, Crossville, here comes the coolest guy in town and his name is Rafael R. Soriano, also known by fans everywhere as “Wild Man,” but he calls himself “Wild Man Billy Ralph!”

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • KOTR Steven Whitson Picture.jpg 'An Evening with Steven Whitson' to benefit Kids on the Rise

    ds on the Rise will be hosting a fund-raising concert Aug. 2 at the Palace Theatre. The local non-profit agency will present An Evening with Steven Whitson.

    July 2, 2014 2 Photos

  • Fair Park-big band p8.jpg Big Band Sound to entertain at Fair Park dance

    The famous local “Big Band Sound” will be playing for your listening and dancing enjoyment on Saturday, July 12, 7-10 p.m. The 20-piece band will be performing at the Fair Park Senior Center which is located at 1433 Livingston Rd., across from the fairgrounds. No matter your budget you can enjoy this one night with a donation, which will go to the band. Light snacks will be available. Come and enjoy yourself with the music you love!

    July 2, 2014 1 Photo

  • ACPL offers free movies

    A different movie is shown every Tuesday in the Cumberland Meeting Room at the Art Circle Library at 2 p.m. for free. All are welcome. For more information, call Charlie at 484‐6790, ext. 223. See the featured films below.

    July 2, 2014

  • York 1.jpg Palace to screen York documentary July 25

    On Friday night, July 25, at 6 p.m., the city of Crossville will host a 100th anniversary remembrance of World War I with a screening of a new documentary about the most celebrated hero of the war, Tennessee’s own Sergeant Alvin C. York.

    June 26, 2014 1 Photo

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